Thanasis Karavelis,

Apnea-Academy instructor and national greek free-diving champion will tell us how to spearfish in the beautiful waters of northern Greece...




In my opinion Chalkidiki is one of the best places in the world to do our sport and I also recommend it to anyone wishing to combine family vacation and spear fishing.

It is very close to 2nd largest city of Greece and semi-capital Thessaloniki.

It takes about an hour to get, either by car or by public means, from Thessaloniki to the first fishing spot. For those who don’t mind travel for longer distances there are others good places 2 hours and a half away. 

Chalkidiki is a peninsula with 3 “legs”. The 3rd one called ATHOS starts with the small  Ouranoupolis village on it’s west coast and with the Platy village on the opposite coast in Strymonikos Bay, about 10 km away from the village Ierissos. On this leg is situated the Holy Mountain but in that area spearfishing is forbidden by the local law. Spearfishing is also forbidden in Thermaikos Bay from Thessaloniki to the Village Posidi in the first leg.

So let’s start talking about some fishing spots we all care about.


On the first leg at its very edge there is a place called Paliouri. Over there the sea bottom generally slopes gradually but in some other places the local mountains end up into the sea and the depth increases immediately.

The fishes are not so abundant there because of the industrial fishing and this is a very common phenomenon across the world, but in relation to the moon phases and the weather conditions you can find many big specimen over there.

The fishes that we are used to spear here are: groupers, red snappers (Dentex Dentex) , golden groupers, white breams, Amberjacks, Bluefish and some other small species.

About 7-8 miles off the coast of Paliouri, heading to Limnos island you will also have the chance to make your own luck hunting great tunas. Owning a boat is not necessary as there is plenty of choice to rent one.

So let’s move to the 2nd leg and in particular to Porto Koufo village.

koufoPorto Koufo is a naturally closed and very deep bay protected from any kind of weather and in case you have a boat it is a unique place to anchor. In addition there are hotels that make our life easier giving us the opportunity to park our boat just outside the bedroom.

ericaLeaving Porto Koufo and heading south east we will find so many places for spear fishing that 7 days of holidays won’t be enough. Of course inside the bay spear fishing is forbidden along with the south east side just out side of the bay.

The sea bottom here is much steeper and the depth just keeps on going!!! Sea currents are also hard sometimes and you always have to be cautious but whenever there is current fishes are there.

Big red snappers side by side with huge golden groupers will show up just below 20m depth. Never be hasty. Always wait because the bigger fishes come after the small ones.


Huge groupers are used to watch you from the bottom ready to hide into their holes but chasing after them is something I always do not recommend cause once they go in there, there is no way to find them.

Groupers in that area are too smart for many good spearfishers, so go for the big golden groupers that taste better!!! Below 30mt you will have the chance to see them in large schools.

Big isolated rocks coming out of the water together with big depths can only mean one thing: open water fishing!!! In June huge schools of Amberjacks ranging from 10 to 25 kilos will come to check you out, so never hesitate if you hold a big gun over 100cm in your hand.

ammoulianiAnd last but not least...the 3rd leg!!!!!!

Between the 2nd and the 3rd leg there is an Island called Ammouliani that you can reach by a ferry leaving every 30min in summer time from Tripiti.

For the lucky ones who have a boat it’s a walk in the park, green and blue waters blend in a magnificent underwater landscape.

Thanks to the restrictions of the Holy Mountain national park I mentioned earlier many fishes like red snappers and golden groupers come to this island for summer vacations too!!!

alikes beach

But wait…….

The best venue to hunt these preys is where you can find “underwater mountains” in very deep waters (about -35mt/-40mt) and nothing else around on the bottom.

That is the place were the giants of the abyss live. In order to succeed in catching them I suggest the use of 120cm guns or longer ones, armed with 8mm spears and propelled by more than 2 bands because these giant fishes are not easy to get close to so you will need a fast and captive shot.

And when you think that big just can’t get bigger….


For any further info about spearfishing in greece or freediving courses click  here



Thanasis Karavelis


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